Why “Letting Go” Is The Key To Reducing Stress
The Act Of Letting Go Can Instantly Change Your Life
Letting go sounds simple but it’s a lot harder to do than most people think. How often do our friends tell us to just ‘let it go’ when we are in the grips of a stressful situation? And though it may make sense to just let it go, for some, letting go translates to not caring and/or giving up, and this, in turn, can lead to feelings of failure. Sometimes we just can’t understand why a trusted friend can’t see things from our point of view. Other times we feel as though the situation is simply unjust.
There are times that we hold onto life changing events because we feel that we were not heard or understood, that we did not have closure. Perhaps we are still replaying the event in our heads in hopes of somehow changing the outcome – in other words, fixing it.
There may be times when another person was involved in your life-changing event and they may have long let go of any emotional charge associated with it. In a case such as this, if you try to confront them they may not be receptive to helping you settle your emotions. When this occurs it only compounds the heaviness of your scar.
But consider this – What if letting go is the very thing that would fix a problematic situation?
The act of letting go can be compared to the Chinese Finger Puzzle. If you are unfamiliar with this, then let me describe it for you.
It’s a tube that fits on both index fingers and the idea is to release your fingers from the tube. Your first instinct is to pull your fingers out of the tube, however, the harder you try to pull your fingers apart, the tighter the tube becomes. The trick to breaking free is to completely relax (let go) and by doing so you’ll find your fingers slip out of the tube very easily.
Letting go can be viewed as an extension of understanding the dangers of making assumptions because when we allow our preconceived notions to dictate in any given situation, we create dogmatic perceptions that are never based in truth. One could then say that letting go is actually an act of releasing non-constructive convictions and assumptions.
Don Miguel Ruiz, the author of The Four Agreements, wrote something that struck me deeply. To summarize, he notes that when we try to fix other people’s problems what we are really saying is that we don’t respect them enough to believe that they can fix their own problems.
This is not to say that sometimes people don’t need our help, but rather that we need to allow people the choice of asking for help or not. The solution to any problem is directly linked to the life lessons that we have not yet encountered. Only by learning these lessons can we expect to grow as individuals. This is no different than having to touch the stove to realize that it’s hot.
We never want to see our loved ones suffer in life, but it’s important to realize that everyone, including our loved ones, will experience unfavorable occurrences in life including pain, loss, and death, and we can’t change those circumstances.
Allowing our loved ones to experience life in its entirety gives them the tools that they need to handle any situation that they may encounter, and to remain grounded and balanced all the while.
Remember, “letting go” does not mean letting go of love…in fact…letting go can be viewed as the highest form of love for not only others but for YOU as well!